Over the next several weeks, we’re going to learn a lot more about the anthrax case and Bruce E. Ivins, the man the US government believed was the anthrax terrorist. But what we do know so far includes the following:

  • the targets of the anthrax attacks were progressive Democratic Senators and the media
  • for 18 years, Ivins was a US Army microbiologist working on biodefense
  • Ivins was a practicing Catholic

To be sure, Ivins’ profession and his religion aren’t evidence, by themselves, that he was some Bircher. But taken together they don’t exactly paint the picture of some dirty hippie either. And now that it’s pretty clear that Saddam Hussein or some a-rab wasn’t the culprit — despite what John McSame was saying at the time, the fact that Democrats and the media were targeted should at least raise questions about a possible political motive.

Ivins, who was described by an acquaintance as "a pretty religious guy," wrote a series of rather strange letters to his local newspaper over the years, including this gloating note about the outcome of the 2004 election: (h/t Glenn Greenwald)

I read Deborah Carter’s column of Nov. 7, "Election blues," and I have three comments for the good woman, and for everybody else, as well.

First, it’s clear that views like hers would put Jesus on that cross again. Second, thy loom and churn best be still, come the Sabbath. Third, you can get on board or get left behind, because that Christian Nation Express is pulling out of the station!

Let’s not jump to conclusions. Ivins’ attorney is maintaining his innocence, and we don’t have all the facts yet. But it’s hard not to wonder, given what we do know so far, if Ivins wasn’t yet another Eric Rudolph, Jim Adkisson or Timothy McVeigh.